For the seventh year in a row, our dynastic volleyball team is headed to a championship match following yesterday’s 3-0 sweep of fourth-seeded Portledge. In a rematch of last year’s PSAA semifinal, the script remained unchanged as the Bears methodically dispatched the Panthers en route to the final.
The Bears’ 41st consecutive home victory got off to a fast start after Portledge failed to return Niamh Scanlon’s first two serves. Ava McCormick follow with a kill, Scanlon served up an ace, and Gillian Bernier hammered a spike for a quick 5-0 lead. The Brook never trailed in the set behind seven aces and numerous kills from McCormick and Lilly Keegan. A Bernier spike emphatically closed the opening round, 25-6.
Portledge took their only lead of the match early in set two, 0-1, but order was quickly restored when McCormick scored a touch kill and Scanlon ripped off five aces over the next six points, a streak only interrupted by a Bernier kill. A pair of Bernier aces moved the lead to 12-3. A Middlekauff kill ended a long rally that pushed the advantage to 16-5. A Keegan spike gave The Brook an 18-5 edge. Consecutive Bernier kills, the second buried in the back left corner, swelled the lead to 21-7 on the way to the 25-10 win.
The Bears never trailed in set three, thanks in large part to the devastating play of Bernier who racked up six aces and a pair of kills in the frame. Portledge displayed heart in playing hard through the final point, but the Bear attack proved too powerful in the 25-11 victory.
With the win, the Bears move on to the PSAA Championship once again where they will host third-seeded Heschel this afternoon in a rematch of the 2019 title match.
- Digs (44): Georgia Apazidis (13), Bernier (10), Keegan (7), McCormick (4), Middlekauff (3), MacKenzie Zwillman (2)
- Kills (32): McCormick (11), Bernier (9), Keegan (6), Middlekauff (3), Nikki Carlo (2), Scanlon (1), Sandy Tao (1)
- Aces (20): Bernier (8), Scanlon (7), McCormick (2), Tao (2), Middlekauff (1)